Hello Rock Stars! I stumbled upon this piece on Buzzfeed the other day, and needless to say, I instantly freaked out.
Now, I love reading the fun things on Buzzed, but this title and following list had me completely out of my mind. Parents today are struggling with so much guilt and frustration that they are not doing enough for their kids and battling a self-talk that tells them they are not enough. If you are a parent dealing with those feelings and belief set on a daily basis, and then innocently stumble over this article, I seriously think it could put you over the edge, IF you buy into it. Parents can easily make themselves feel like the worst part ever if they interpret that every other parent is blowing up balloons the night before Valentine’s Day or creating heart-shaped braids adorned with conversation hearts in their kids’ hair. IT IS NOT OUR JOB TO MAKE SURE THAT OUR KIDS HAVE THE BEST VALENTINES DAY EVER, OR ANY DAY FOR THAT MATTER! Whether a kid has a great day or a memorable, fantastic holiday is in the hands of the child. Our children’s mindset determines their interpretation of whether a day is the BEST EVER or the WORST EVER. We are not as parents, responsible for making our children happy. What we ARE responsible for, it teaching and educating our children about the power and choices they have available for viewing the world and their experiences. The way we do that is by speaking to them daily about their day, and taking specific situations, both positive and negative and talk with our kids about how they view those events. Reinforce to them that regardless of the traditional perception of an event, they have a powerful tool – their mind – which allows them to interpret the event in any way they want. Let’s say my son comes home with a bad grade on a test. He has a choice about how to deal with that situation. He can choose to be upset, angry, and frustrated with that grade, feeling like a failure. OR, he can view it as a sign that he needs to look at how he prepared for the test, that the grade was an alert and he can make the right changes to do well the next time. My son might take on both scenarios in his mind, but when he can spend a bit of time with the first mindset and then move on to the second, that becomes his powerful tool to change his day to a positive one. Children CAN be taught this skill. For some, it is part of their personality, and others might need lots of practice. Either way, giving our kids the TOOLS to manage their mindset puts their lives in their hands. A much more loving gift than serving them heart-shaped bacon on Valentine’s Day.